George Floyd was top of mind for the Minnesota Vikings ahead of their first game in a pandemic-riddled season -- and they paid tribute to him with his family in attendance.
FOX 9's Dawn Mitchell tweeted a video from high up in the stands of a mostly empty U.S. Bank Stadium -- which showed, before kickoff, all of the Vikings players standing shoulder-to-shoulder at the goal line as the announcer made some comments about Floyd's story.
George's family members were captured on the Jumbotron, standing together, as everyone looked on. The big screen also displayed snapshots of some of the many memorials/murals that have popped up around town in the wake of his death.
The Vikings' remembrance was one of the more stand-out ones across the leagues as games ramped up -- other teams had more scattered approaches to addressing social justice.
The Browns' Myles Garrett took a knee, all Patriots players stood together, Colts head coach Frank Reich knelt himself, and the Dolphins remained in the tunnel during the National Anthem. There's more games to come, but so far ... not everyone's on the same page.
Of course, any and all of these reactions are better than what some fans did during Thursday night's premiere match between the Chiefs and Texans ... fans booed when the players locked arms in unity.
Ah yes ... football is back.
Chuck was in NYC Sunday at the famous Gotham Comedy Club, where he and Jerry were pitching a new bill the Senator from New York wants to get introduced in Congress ... which will help fund comedy clubs and live venues throughout the city to keep them afloat.
While they were talking shop, Schumer eventually waded into the humor side of things and told a verrry long joke ... which came to him courtesy of his retired parents, who took a college humor course and told it to him.
We'll let Chuck do the talking here, but short story long ... it's about a lady who comes before a judge for being a kleptomaniac -- and who gets no love from her hubby in the end.
You gotta watch for yourself, 'cause it's actually pretty hilarious ... and Sen. Schumer has great timing and delivery. It's funny too, Jerry turned to the folks in the room who might not have gotten it at first to explain the punchline. The whole thing's a riot.
Schumer: "Jerry Seinfeld said there are four levels of comedy. First, you make your friends laugh -- I'm sort of at that level."— The Hill (@thehill) September 13, 2020 @thehill
Seinfeld: "Yup. That's your level."
Schumer: "Second, you make strangers laugh -- none of them laughed so." pic.twitter.com/11hjrGZmuH
In self-deprecating fashion, Chuck joked he was probably at the first level of comedy that Jerry outlined in his own remarks -- but frankly, he's selling himself short. Dude's funny.
You're at least at level 2, SCS ... maybe this could be your second act!
1:47 PM PT -- L.A. County is now offering a $100,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of the suspect who shot two of the Sheriff's Department's deputies.
10:53 AM PT -- The L.A. County Sheriff's Dept. claims protesters tried bum-rushing the hospital where two of their deputies are in critical condition, blocked some of the emergency entrances and exits ... and allegedly began chanting, "We hope they die."
LASD writes, "To the protesters blocking the entrance & exit of the HOSPITAL EMERGENCY ROOM yelling "We hope they die" referring to 2 LA Sheriff's ambushed today in #Compton: DO NOT BLOCK EMERGENCY ENTRIES & EXITS TO THE HOSPITAL. People's lives are at stake when ambulances can't get through."
Video that purportedly shows this going down circulated online Saturday night, and it depicts what appears to be a group of demonstrators confronting cops that are standing guard ... and making derogatory comments.
6:36 AM PT -- President Trump has responded, "If they die, fast trial death penalty for the killer." Joe Biden called the shooting "cold-blooded" and "unconscionable," adding the shooter "must be brought to justice."
Two L.A. County Sheriff's deputies were shot Saturday night and are now fighting for their lives.
The deputies -- a man and a woman -- were sitting in their patrol car Saturday in Compton when a man walked up to the car with a gun and fired inside, striking both. The man quickly fled from the scene.
The Sheriff's Dept., says both deputies were shot multiple times and they are both undergoing surgery. Their condition is critical.
The suspect was not caught. The LASD tweeted the video of the incident after holding a press conference last night.
The 2 critically injured deputies had only been on the force for 14 months.
Originally published -- 5:57 AM PT
1:09 PM PT -- 9/13 -- Lyft says the altercation caught on camera didn't happen on their watch.
The rideshare company tweeted an update, saying ... "We’ve been made aware of a disturbing incident in Georgia. While we confirmed this did not happen during a Lyft ride, we unequivocally stand against racism and unnecessary use of force. We are in contact w/ @Georgia_NAACP."
Unclear why this was thought to have happened in a Lyft to begin with, but clearly ... the company's saying it wasn't. In any case, the use of force speaks for itself.
10:25 AM PT -- 9/13 -- The Clayton County Sheriff's Office just announced that the deputy who was seen on camera pounding on the Black Lyft passenger has been terminated, effective immediately.
They say, "the Deputy who repeatedly struck Roderick Walker is being terminated from the Clayton County Sheriff’s Office by order of Sheriff Victor Hill for excessive use of force."
Breaking!— Audrey Washington (@AudreyWSBTV) September 13, 2020 @AudreyWSBTV
Per Clayton County Sheriff’s Office:
”The Deputy who repeatedly struck Roderick Walker is being terminated from the Clayton County Sheriff’s Office by order of Sheriff Victor Hill for excessive use of force.”@wsbtv pic.twitter.com/v9aDNfqCqg
A WSB-TV reporter also posted a photo of Walker's injuries from what appears to be from inside of a jail, where he's behind plexiglass in a jail uniform ... with a swollen eye.
A black man pleaded for his life Friday as cops put a knee to his neck, punched him in the face, and the circumstances preceding the altercation are shocking.
The man, his cousin and a third person were passengers in a Lyft that was pulled over in Clayton County, Georgia ... they say it was pulled over because a tail light was out. They say Sheriff's deputies asked for his license but he didn't have one. That's when they say a deputy asked to see the passengers' licenses. They asked the officers why they had to show ID since they had done nothing wrong.
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There was clearly a confrontation, because the video starts with the man on the ground with 2 deputies on top of him. At one point, you see a deputy punch the man repeatedly in the face, drawing blood.
You hear a woman -- apparently the man's cousin -- screaming at the cops to stop punching, and the deputy responds, "He's biting my hand."
As the deputy continues to press the man's head on the pavement he screams, "I'm gonna die!" and "I can't breathe." The young child watches as the man on the ground appears to have been rendered unconscious.
We do not know if the man was injured. It appears he was arrested.
The Clayton County Sheriff's Office tells TMZ, "After being made aware of a video posted on social media involving a Deputy using physical force on a man, Sheriff Victor Hill ordered his entire Internal Affairs Unit to come in and begin an investigation that has been on going since 8pm. The Sheriff has ordered that the Deputy involved be placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation."
Originally Published -- 9/12 7:49 AM PT
A city councilwoman in Minot, North Dakota got into it with a resident during a council meeting Friday -- a resident who was clearly upset the City would dare raise an LGBTQ+ flag -- and she shut him down by telling him and the rest of the City ... she's gay and she's proud of it.
Councilwoman Carrie Evans clearly had it with the man who has issues with gays, saying, “So, Mr. Walker, if you’re not aware, and I think a lot of people in this room are not aware, and have come here just because this is a gay issue, I am proudly the first openly elected lesbian in North Dakota. So that is why I am not paying any heed to your crap!”
She went on ... “I am a person. I get to see myself represented on that flagpole just as much as the people who got the Juneteenth flag last month, as much as the POW/MIA will get later this month.”
And that wasn't the end ... “Every single person is entitled to see themselves represented. We are not some group of people who live in San Francisco or Seattle. We are HERE. We are your elected officials. We are your brothers. we are your sisters, and don’t tell me you’re not hatred or anger. That’s all I feel. I’ve had to listen to it for days now, as has the mayor and many of my colleagues. It is unacceptable!”
And then she ended with this ... "I’m sorry that it doesn’t make you feel comfortable, but we’re here, we’re queer, and we’re not going away!”
His response ... "Thank you for exposing yourself ..." Well, that says it all, right?
The former NYC Mayor and current billionaire announced Sunday he's committing $100 million to defeat Donald Trump in Florida.
It's incredibly significant because according to some polls the race in Florida is tightening. Biden is ahead in most polls, but generally within the margin of error. Bloomberg wants to target Latino voters ... Biden has support among Latinos, but relative to other Democrats his support is somewhat soft.
Bloomberg's not keeping his strategy under wraps. His people said in announcing the donation, "Mike's substantial investment in Florida will allow Democrats and the Biden campaign to invest heavily in other key states like Pennsylvania ... And, this will force Republicans and the Trump campaign to shift even more of their limited resources to Florida."
True to form, Trump responded on Twitter with name-calling, saying, "I thought Mini Mike was through with Democrat politics after spending almost 2 Billion Dollars, and then giving the worst and most inept Debate Performance in the history of Presidential Politics. Pocahontas ended his political career on first question, OVER! Save NYC instead."
Floridians can cast vote-by-mail ballots later this month.
Black Lives Matter protesters were out in force Saturday night, stopping traffic for a time on the George Washington Bridge in NYC in a loud, tense but mostly peaceful protest.
The crowd chanted "No justice, no peace" as protesters put cones on the bridge to prevent traffic from crossing. The bridge was blocked for only 40 minutes, but the point was certainly driven home.
There were some tense moments between police and protesters, but for the most part, it didn't get out of hand. There were a few shoving matches between protesters and police. At one point you see a cop push a protester who falls on the pavement.
The protest then moved to the 34th Precinct where the group continued to demonstrate, chanting, "F*** the police."
The NYPD says 6 people were taken into custody.
The NBA bubble was the scene of a Black Lives Matter protest Saturday, as protesters were trying to get the attention of athletes who have led the charge in recent months for social justice.
Protesters gathered around the Walt Disney World campus, close to the public entrance. The demonstrators wanted LeBron James, Russell Westbrook and other NBA stars to see them as they held signs and shouted messages with the help of megaphones.
Many of the protesters focused on the fatal shooting of Salaythis Melvin, a 22-year-old Black man who was shot in the back at a mall in Orange County, Florida ... just 15 miles from the Bubble.
For a time protesters blocked a bus carrying NBA staff and media, but the bus eventually entered the facility.
Naomi Osaka just won her second U.S. Open title in 2 years -- and as part of her victory speech, she made sure to continue bringing awareness to social justice to the very end.
The tennis superstar defeated Victoria Azarenka Saturday over the course of three sets -- 1-6, 6-3, 6-3 -- and walked away a champion once more ... securing her second U.S. Open women's championship title in 2 years, and her third Grand Slam win in three.
She was clearly overwhelmed by the victory, 'cause she ended up lying down on the court afterward ... and stared straight up to the sky as the crowd cheered her on. Afterward, she was all smiles holding her trophy -- kinda the opposite reaction from when she defeated Serena Williams in 2018.
Anyway, this year has been incredibly noteworthy for Naomi ... not to mention her boyfriend, Cordae, who's been her rock through the entire tournament. Both of them have been very outspoken on racial justice, often wearing clothing with messages supporting BLM.
Saturday proved no different ... Cordae was in the stands and had a shirt on that read "Defund the Police." Prior to her finals match this weekend, Naomi herself was wearing a mask featuring the name of 12-year-old Tamir Rice ... who was gunned down by a cop for playing with a toy gun in Cleveland back in 2014.
Naomi also made sure to make her message clear about the 7 masks she rocked during the U.S. Open -- which blared the names of victims of police brutality. She said she just wants to get more people talking about the issue ... and yes, she certainly achieved that.
Several family members of those people she was amplifying recently thanked her for not forgetting their loved ones ... and shared their gratitude remotely as she went along in the tourney.
Mission accomplished. Congrats!
PPE has gone full bougie -- 'cause, soon, you'll be able to fight COVID-19 and look fly doing it at the same time ... for a pretty penny, of course.
Louis Vuitton is introducing a new item to their 2021 Cruise Collection ... a high-priced face shield, laced with their signature 'LV' trim along the edges of the plastic itself and headband, plus their well-known gold studs. It's supposed to hit the market starting next month.
And, get this ... it's only gonna cost folks a mere $961 (more or less)!!! To recap ... that's almost a cool grand for plastic, more plastic and a sliver of leather with some nifty print.
A reported description of Louis V's forthcoming face shield says it can also be flipped up and worn as a visor -- so dual function, if you can call it that. They also say it's "an eye-catching headpiece, both stylish and protective." The shield also turns dark in the sun or bright light.
LV isn't the first luxury fashion brand to dabble in COVID wear -- Burberry recently announced they were rolling out their own face masks as well, but theirs are more subtle than Louis' shield. According to reports, they're supposed to be going for about $115.
Off-White also has a line of face masks -- they're hawking 'em for about $100 or so. Balenciaga and Dolce & Gabbana got some too, similar price ranges.
Louis Vuitton's face shield stands alone though. The real question now ... you copping???
More than a dozen Black families came together for a common cause in Georgia -- snatching up a bunch of land to start their own community, which they hope will be a safe haven.
The nearly 97 acres of unincorporated land recently purchased near the town of Toomsboro -- about 130 miles south of Atlanta -- has now been dubbed Freedom, GA ... and the 19 Black families that went in on the land are hoping to make it a complete city one step at a time.
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Renee Walters and Ashley Scott are the two women who kick-started the initiative -- now known as the Freedom Georgia Initiative -- and they say they did it because they wanted a safe place to raise their families without fear of police brutality or other forms of oppression embedded into society. The whole idea is a community by Black people for Black people.
They also note that when the place is up and running -- with an agriculture infrastructure, businesses and eventually homes -- they won't exclude anyone ... meaning you don't have to be Black to be a resident. They do make it clear though ... it'll be a pro-Black town.
The first phase of getting all this started is clearing the land, farming it and then creating a man-made lake that they intend to use for sustainable fishing. It's a massive undertaking, and will presumably take years before it might be considered viable. Still, they're working on it.
Over Labor Day weekend ... Renee, Ashley and co. hosted an event called the Big Black Camp Out, where folks flocked in from all over the country to enjoy the land with tents and RVs in tow. It also served as a ribbon-cutting ceremony to highlight the achievement.
As for what exactly inspired them to do this ... Renee and Ashley say the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and others -- plus the protests that have erupted as a result -- made them realize they needed their own space for their own people.
Pretty incredible stuff, really. But, it's somewhat also disheartening considering this is what some POC feel they need to do in order to thrive and avoid persecution.
Steve Martin feels like he loses a piece of himself when he goes out in public while having to wear a mask ... so he found a hilarious way to make sure he's ID'd while still being safe.
The legendary comedian posted a selfie Saturday morning in a surgical mask with a pair of shades ... and a nifty little homemade nameplate he plopped on his noggin that certifies folks will know who he is while shielding part of his face due to COVID.
He writes, "I always wear a mask when I go outside. But something about it was leaving me anxious and unsettled. I thought about the problem, addressed it, and here is the solution."
Of course ... there's an arrow pointing downward, just so there's no mistaking who Steve Martin is. It's comedy gold, and also reminiscent of his old arrow-through-the-head gag he used to do in his early stand-up days. The man clearly hasn't lost his sense of humor.
Ice seemed to appreciate the social commentary too, especially for folks who feel like they can't interact with people the way they used to with a mask on ... or who feel anonymous and not like themselves. Hey, if you're bummed about that ... just do what SM did.
A name tag would probably be the easier route here -- but that wouldn't nearly be as much fun now, would it?
Iranian wrestling champ Navid Afkari has been executed in Iran, officials confirm.
The 27-year-old was hanged Saturday morning in Adelabad prison in the city of Shiraz, according to Iranian state media IRNA.
As we previously reported, Afkari participated in a peaceful 2018 protest against government policies. But, officials later accused him of stabbing a water supply company employee during the protests.
Afkari apparently confessed to the stabbing in a video put out by Iranian officials last week .. but most believe the confession was forced after he had been tortured.
Afkari -- a decorated wrestler in Iran who medaled in multiple national tournaments -- had been issued TWO death sentences for his alleged crimes in order to send a message to the rest of the country.
President Trump had tweeted to the Iranian government earlier this month asking them to spare Afkari's life.
"Hearing that Iran is looking to execute a great and popular wrestling star, 27-year-old Navid Afkarai, whose sole act was an anti-government demonstration on the streets," Trump said.
"They were protesting the 'country’s worsening economic situation and inflation.'"
Ultimately, Iran ignored Trump's request.
Forget the Music City Miracle, the Hillcrest-Tuscaloosa High School football team just scored the wildest, greatest touchdown EVER.
It went down Friday night when the team was playing rival Wetumpka High. Hillcrest was down 30-28 with 2.9 seconds left in the game on their own 41-yard line. So, it's do or die.
Quarterback Ethan Crawford passes the ball to the running back in the flat, and that's when the craziness starts. Watch as various players get the ball via a total of 9 -- COUNT THEM NINE -- laterals.
At times the ball is fumbled and picked up. At times the runner is tackled, but not before throwing the ball in the air with the hope a teammate will catch it.
The 2.9-second play lasted 59 seconds. In almost poetic fashion, QB Crawford is the last person with the ball and runs untouched 46 yards for the game-winning TD.
Patrick Mahomes ... watch your back!!!
The dog owner caught on camera dragging, choking and slapping his dog is fessing up and apologizing ... and the abused pup is getting a new home.
Jeffrey Previte, CEO of an environmental consulting firm in L.A., tells TMZ ... he truly regrets the way he attempted to discipline his dog, Bici, and he's sorry and heartbroken over the incident.
Jeffrey tells us he lost his temper and "took unreasonable and unjustifiable action" ... and he's owning up to the video while also saying it doesn't represent the time he spent with Bici.
Previte says he's sorry to Bici and anyone disturbed by the video ... he also tells us he loves the dog and they've had "an exceptional life full of nature and affection."
As we reported ... surveillance footage from Jeffrey's Santa Monica apartment building showed him snapping on the dog last month, and his employer launched an investigation when the disturbing video surfaced.
Jeffrey tells us he's accepting responsibility by taking a leave of absence from his job, enrolling in an anger management program and spending time and money helping animal rights orgs. He also says he's placed Bici with a loving family.
Jeff says he's "an imperfect person" and hopes for some level of forgiveness in time as he tries to become a better human and grow as a man.
A vile woman verbally attacked multiple Starbucks employees while letting slurs fly left and right ... and didn't stop ranting all the way to her car.
The disgusting incident took place in El Segundo, CA last weekend, and according to the worker who posted the video it was completely unprovoked ... and it's obviously inexcusable regardless.
As the woman's being escorted out the shop by the barista, she begins to hurl n-words and f-words at him ... and is unfazed by the threat of police being called.
The woman then directs her racist and homophobic slurs at the manager, who is also telling her she needs to leave. Not that it matters, but the lady's tirade seems to be completely nonsensical and ridiculous ... especially her gripe about being disrespected.
The barista who shared the video says this woman mistreated one of his co-workers a couple days before this -- by calling her an "It" repeatedly -- so that barista asked him to take her order because she was uncomfortable dealing with her.
That's when he claims the customer in the vid began calling the other barista an "It" again, and then went ballistic when they asked her to be respectful.
Though the manager is seen on the video calling the cops on the irate woman, our law enforcement sources tell us the Starbucks later called back and told police not to come because she had left in her car.